Ontario NDP leader wraps up three days of caucus meetings in Thunder Bay with a question-and-answer luncheon with local community leaders.
THUNDER BAY – Ontario Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath doesn’t believe the Conservative government’s approach to develop the Ring of Fire is a workable solution.
Earlier this week Greg Rickford, the mines minister, said the province would end a framework agreement signed five years ago with nine Matawa First Nations communities, and instead work with communities “willing to work at the speed of business.”
Horwath said Ontario has a responsibility and an obligation to consult with First Nations communities about the potentially multi-billion dollar mineral extraction project in the province’s far north.
“It’s a duty and you can’t simply get on a bulldozer and drive on into the Ring of Fire and create a chaotic situation. It’s just not the way things are supposed to happen and I’m very, very troubled that this government doesn’t seem to understand its treaty obligations and duties and doesn’t seem to respect its obligation of engaging First Nations communities,” Horwath said on Thursday, wrapping up three days of NDP caucus meetings in Thunder Bay.
“The last thing I want to see is a government that pits one community against another, that creates a divide-and-conquer kind of scenario. That’s the last thing we need.”